Pickerington Times-Sun

Pickerington Community Theatre

'The Music Man' opens Friday on Heritage Elementary stage

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Recreating a scene from the Pickerington Community Theater production of The Music Man (from left) are David Zweibel, Todd Decker, Dan Griscom, David Dodds, Jeff DeBoer and Zach Conway.

"The Music Man" is an iconic big-time production, full of catchy musical numbers, along with a healthy dose of comedy and romance, set in small-town heartland America during a bygone era.

The Pickerington Community Theatre will be performing The Music Man for a two-week run from Friday, July 11, through July 20 in the Heritage Elementary School Theater, 100 W. East St.

Director and theater group President Chris Gallaugher said The Music Man is the perfect, family-friendly show for those seeking post-holiday entertainment.

"It's extremely funny and has a lot of high-energy musical numbers, the kind that leaves you humming the tunes a day later," Gallaugher said.

Written by Meredith Wilson, The Music Man is the story of fast-talking traveling salesman Horace Hill, played by Dave Zweibel, who tries to convince the good citizens of River City, Iowa, to buy instruments and uniforms for a boy's marching band he has no intention of ever organizing.

Instead, his plan is to take the money and run.

Hill is foiled, however, when he falls for Marian, the town's librarian, played by Elaine Schroeder. She ends up transforming the hilariously devious and conniving Hill into a respectable citizen.

With more than 120 people involved in the musical, including the cast, a live orchestra and production staff, Gallaugher said putting on a show of this magnitude "is a ton of work."

The large cast has 72 people on stage at various times.

In addition, a "larger than normal orchestra" of 14 musicians will accompany the singing, Gallaugher said.

"Directing a musical is a little like herding cats, especially with kids," he said. "There is a lot of stuff going on, a lot of moving parts.

"When you've got dancing and singing, a sound system, a set to build and then we have to bring in our own lighting system, it takes a lot if folks to make this happen."

Since it premiered on Broadway in 1957, The Music Man continues to appeal to new generations of theater-goers, he said.

"Community theaters and high schools have been doing (The Music Man) for years," Gallaugher said. "It's the kind of show people will want to see again and again."

The Music Man will run at 8 p.m. Friday, July 11; Saturday, July 12; and July 18 and 19.

Matinees are scheduled for 2 p.m. Sunday, July 13 and 20.

All tickets are reserved seating. Tickets are $12 for adults, $10 for children and seniors.

Tickets can be purchased online at pctshows.com; or by calling 614-378-5767.